View Full Version : I'm about to shoot my computer in the modem.

The Mad Monk
27-09-2005, 07:30:49
New modem, BTW.

I finally gave in to the inevitable, and bought a modem for my home built Athlon 64, which has never connected to the net before. A USRobotics V.92 modem.

The modem refused to dial out because it could not detect a dial tone.

I checked the wires, and picked up the phone. There was, in fact, a dial tone.

After a good hour of troubleshooting, in which I tried several different wires, told it to not wait for a dial tone, left the phone off, etc, I tried sonething silly.

I took the phone off the hook, and with the dial tone ringing in my ear, I tried to connect.

It did.

At 4.2K.

Subsequent runs showed that if I clamped my hand over the mouthpiece real tight, it could acheive 26K, but if I hung up at any point, the line would disconnect.



Scabrous Birdseed
27-09-2005, 16:46:05
Well, what you need to do is the following:

(1) Start wearing bright pastel-coloured clothes with silly shoulder pads.

(2) Play your Milli Vanilli tapes in your ghetto blaster.

(3) Watch plenty of Beverly Hills 90210.

Cause you, sir, are obviously stuck in about 1992. Modem? You gotta be kidding. I haven't even seen a modem in about five years.

Sir Penguin
27-09-2005, 17:11:17
No, V.92 is more like 1999. What he really needs to do is come back from the Alternate Universe (does the modem have a goatee?)

Have you tried unplugging the phone?


27-09-2005, 17:32:27
Come on now, not everyone can afford broadband.

27-09-2005, 17:34:15
Bullshit. I'm poor and I can afford broadband.

The Mad Monk
27-09-2005, 19:35:24
Originally posted by Sir Penguin
No, V.92 is more like 1999. What he really needs to do is come back from the Alternate Universe (does the modem have a goatee?)

Have you tried unplugging the phone?


One of the first things I tried.

The problem isn't the phone, it's the modem's inability to control the phone line. It can't "pick up" on its own, and I need to know if it's a hardware or software problem, and if it lay within the modem, or elsewhere.

I have never heard of this happening before, any ideas?

The Mad Monk
27-09-2005, 19:37:21
...and yes, I use dialup. I have done so all these years. I'm sure it's been mentioned before.

Scabrous Birdseed
27-09-2005, 19:47:17

I've quite probably got the shittiest computer on these boards, and even I have 10 Mbit.

The Mad Monk
27-09-2005, 21:01:23
May an overly friendly Saint Bernard find you asleep on your back with your mouth agape.

Scabrous Birdseed
27-09-2005, 23:01:45
I'm sorry. I know, it's not the same thing in the States. Us Scandinavians together with the South Koreans are apparently in front when it comes to bandwith/price/accessibility. (I pay about 15 dollars a month for broadband, btw. That's close to the norm, even at these speeds.)

So, the modem. My parents still have dialup, the poor sods, and I've torn my hair out summer after summer because of the crap connections, so I sympathise, really.

Are you using your base socket (or whatever it's called), you know the first phone socket where the line comes into the house? I ask cause the signal strength might be enough at later sockets to sustain a phone line but not an analogue data stream.

If the modem is plugged in "after" the phone (which your story seems to suggest), it might be a wiring fault in the socket or in the heads of the wire leading up to the modem. My phone and modem at least both use the same type of wire port, have you tried switching the units and seing if you still can get a dial tone?

Are you sure you're using the right port on your modem? Most have two. If you are, have you run the phone through the modem (which is what the other port is for) and checked if you still get a dial tone?

Qaj the Fuzzy Love Worm
28-09-2005, 00:29:57
SBC Yahoo! is selling broadband access for $14.95 per month, with a "free" DSL modem thrown in (they charge you $100 for it, then credit you $100, but they make you pay shipping on it). Given that my dialup was $10 a month, that's not what I consider a huge extra expense :)

SBC Yahoo! isn't the only provider offering those kinds of prices these days: look around and see what you can find.

As for the modem issue, you can probably find a PCI one online for about $5 - if you feel so inclined, install it and see if it helps.

The Mad Monk
29-09-2005, 02:16:03
It's part of a daisy chain of sorts...

Wall socket --> Athlon's modem --> PIII's modem --> Phone/Answering Machine.

The PIII modem and the phone both work normally.

I found that taking the phone off the hook and putting it on "mute" would allow the Athlon's modem to work as well as the PIII's modem, so I have a workaround, but it still dosen't give me a clue as to what's happening -- or not happening.

It worked well enough for long enough that I could do 40 Mb of patching to XP, and patch NWN to 1.66 (another 43 Mb).

It not an ideal situation by any means.

29-09-2005, 11:47:40
broadband access for $14.95 per month

8.47 a month !?!?! What speed is that then ? 1kbps ? Jeeze...

29-09-2005, 11:49:47
Could someone give BT a call please ? (http://promo.yahoo.com/sbc/pandp.html?.u_vers=&.u_tn=&.u_status=&.u_reasonCode=&.u_done=&.u_lb=ns&.u_c=1)

Qaj the Fuzzy Love Worm
29-09-2005, 23:07:54
EDIT: I just repeated the link above without reading it first.

Qaj the Fuzzy Love Worm
29-09-2005, 23:17:14
How's this for value?


24Mbps DL/1Mbps UL for AUS$60 per month, or about US$45, or GBP28. Course, you have a download limit, and once you exceed that it drops back to just-better-than-top-dialup-speed 64kbps, but that still leaves 40Gig/month, which is not bad.

30-09-2005, 00:05:05
There may be an answer to the problem, but with lots of cheap and well-performing PCI winmodems out there, I wouldn't search for too long.

I'm on cable now, but my most recent modem was the AOpen FM56-SVV. I got it for less than $15 on Newegg.com. It works out of the box for Windows, and for $15 more spent at Linuxant.com, it'll work with Linux too. Just as long as AOpen doesn't change the chips around while retaining the model name.

On a Not My Favorite Modem Company sidenote...

I had some annoying experiences a couple years ago with a USR external. The first problem was simply connecting the modem to the computer's serial port. During the time it took to order an adapter, the modem could not be used. Another fun thing was that the default init string turned on a feature which happened to be incompatible with my ISP. It would connect normally, and then disconnect immediately afterward. A workaround on the USR website solved the problem, but other modems have init strings that Just Work.

I was happy to replace it after it took damage during an electrical storm.